LIFESTYLE

"God Turns Pain Into Beauty" Says Surfing Champion Bethany Hamilton On 14th Anniversary Of Shark Attack

Date November 22, 2017

As believers, we sometimes read certain parts of scripture and wonder if God really meant them, or there should be another meaning to what we have read. We find that one of those scriptures in the one in Rom 8:28:

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Rom 8:28)

This couldn't have been truer for soul surfer Bethany Hamilton on that fateful day in 2003 when she was attacked by a shark while surfing at the beach.

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Bethany Hamilton's Journey To Faith

In an interview, Bethany mentioned the fact that she grew up in a Christian home a "huge blessing." She said she was introduced early in life to what Jesus did for humanity and quickly embraced that for herself.

Through His death and resurrection on the cross, He provides the forgiveness of our sins and eternal life. This gives me hope in the future that I have as a Christian.

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She said she always seeks to hold fast to the truths of the Bible and what it teaches. During an interview with Christianity Today, in 2011, Bethany spoke about how her faith enabled her to persevere and stand strong in the face of life-threatening challenges.

God can prepare you for anything … And that's exactly what he did. But yes, my mom and I were praying for God to show me his will. I wanted to be a light for him in everything I was doing. And then a couple of weeks later, the shark attack happened, and I feel like God gave us a sense of peace about it, because he's not going to allow anything that he doesn't think you can handle.

The Life-Changing Incidence

It was in 2003 that tragedy befell the soul of the surfer. She had gone to the beach, as usual, to do her thing when it happened! Right there under the water, she suddenly discovered that the water around her had become colorized with red.

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Then, she observed that her left arm was no more. It had been severed by a 14-foot tiger shark while she surfed. The incidence was completely life-changing for Bethany, as it almost took her life as well.

On the anniversary of the unfortunate occurrence, Bethany shared a photo on Instagram and wrote:

Today I'm thankful to be alive! I look back and would not change that day otherwise. God can truly turn pain into beauty. We can grow through our hard times and overcome. Happy stumpy day to me.

A Lesson For Us All

One would think that this unfortunate incidence was going to be the end of Hamilton's dream of becoming a professional surfer. But the die-hard athlete was back on the surfing board just three weeks after the attack.

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In fact, just a little over a year from that fateful day, she won her first national surfing title and is currently a world class surfing champion. Just last year, she beat a six-time world surfing champion to place third in the World Surf League's Fiji Women's Pro Competition.

She has also gone on to lead a normal personal life, being married and having a son Tobias, and is even pregnant right now. Her life and story just emphasizes the fact that God truly makes all things work together for our good, even though we may not understand it at first.

She is a living, breathing proof of the fact that no matter what happens to us in life, nothing can successfully thwart God's plans and agenda for us. So, we too can be confident that in all the troubles we encounter, we are more than conquerors.

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